UA to open first National Museum of Psychology

By Brooke Griffin, Writer

The University of Akron plans on launching the first ever National Museum of Psychology in the spring of 2017.

“The museum will be the first one of its kind in the world dedicated solely to telling the story of psychology’s history,” wrote Cathy Faye, assistant director of the Cummings Center for the History of Psychology (CCHP), in an emailed statement.

In the museum will be artifacts, images, films and documents from CCHP’s collections, including home movies of Sigmund Freud, Stanley Milgram’s simulated shock generator, and 16-millimeter film of the earliest studies of animal behavior and child development.

“The National Museum of Psychology is really based on two questions: What does it mean to be human? And how have we studied and defined the human experience over the last 100 years?” Faye wrote. “We hope that visitors will leave the Museum reflecting on these questions and on their own psychological experiences.”

In April, CCHP will launch a kickstarter campaign to fund development of the museum, whose hours when it opens will be Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturdays from noon to 4 p.m.

Some of the museum’s exhibits will be interactive, allowing visitors to try psychological tests on themselves, step into the environment of well-known experiments, or explore optical illusions, according to Faye.

While the museum will be free for students, faculty, and staff with a valid UA ID, there will be a fee for the general public, whose price has not been set yet.

“For more than a century, psychologists have studied how we think, feel, and act. They’ve measured intelligence, personality, and abilities,” Faye wrote. “They’ve spearheaded efforts for social change in areas such as racial and gender equality.”

As such, Faye says the museum will allow visitors to “get up close and personal with psychology in all its forms, as a science, a profession, and an agent of social change.”